AltSchool Africa Is Pushing Its Edtech Stack Beyond Tech As New Era Looms

By  |  September 4, 2023

AltSchool Africa, a skill-to-market edtech platform, is expanding its learning offerings to include Creative Economy and Business schools. This expansion follows an encouraging first year in which it recorded a 40 percent completion rate and aims to diversify beyond technology-related courses. AltSchool Africa will now offer content creation, sales, and music business courses, with a focus on Africa’s growing creative economy.

Co-founded by Adewale Yusuf, Akintunde Sultan, and Opeyemi Awoyemi in 2021, the platform initially focused on tech-related roles, providing training for software engineering, data science, and product design, attracting USD 1 M in pre-seed funding last year. However, with Africa’s increasing adoption of technology and the emergence of non-traditional career paths like music management and content creation, AltSchool Africa is adapting to meet the evolving needs of learners.

Notable facilitators for the Creative Economy school include Nigerian artist Falzthebahdguy  (Folarin Falana), content creator Mr. Macaroni (Adebowale Adedayo), and media personality Do2dtun (Oladotun Ojuolape Kayode). The Business faculty features film director Nora Awolowo, music journalist Joey Akan, and content creator Aproko Doctor (Chinonso Egemba).

Africa’s music streaming market is rapidly growing, projected to reach USD 372.80 M in 2023, with an annual growth rate of 8.89 percent. AltSchool Africa aims to prepare learners for opportunities in this and other creative sectors.

Since its inception in 2021, AltSchool Africa has received over 50,000 applications from 83 countries and enrolled more than 20,000 learners. The platform focuses on providing accessible and engaging learning experiences for Africans, regardless of their previous education or background. With a mission to upskill Africa’s workforce, AltSchool Africa aims to empower individuals to thrive in the modern world, with course fees starting from USD 100.

The expansion, a statement shared with WT emphasises, aligns with the growing need for upskilling initiatives in Africa, as over 90 percent of youths in the 15-24 age group are part of the informal sector with low pay due to a lack of relevant skills. AltSchool Africa aims to prepare learners for quality job prospects in a rapidly changing job market, with an emphasis on creativity, critical thinking, and problem-solving skills.

“As someone who joined AltSchool Africa from the University of Texas, I understand the significance of an upskilling platform like AltSchool in preparing individuals for career success – locally and internationally. The AltSchool curriculum is designed to cater to learners of all levels, from beginners to experts, who possess a natural curiosity and a drive to solve problems,” reckons Dr. Ademola Akinrinola, Director of Curriculum and Learning Experience Design at AltSchool Africa,

In the last two years, AltSchool Africa boasts nearly 3 million hours of training for tech roles, including software engineering, data science, and product design. Its newly-added programs are focused on non-traditional careers beyond the technology field, and are designed to provide a comprehensive and experiential upskilling platform for aspiring learners looking to forge careers in other growing sectors.

With the ongoing adoption and expansion of technology on the continent, Africa has witnessed a burgeoning interest in its creative economy. As a result, a new wave of nonconformist career paths has emerged (for example, music management, content creation, and influencer marketing). This shift in thinking has enabled young people to reimagine their goals as well as career prospects outside of technology; with AltSchool positioning for a new era in learning for the continent. 

Speaking on the launch and call for applications, Co-Founder and CEO of AltSchool Africa, Yusuf, said, “Our goal is to create a fun and communal learning platform for all Africans to develop their skills, regardless of their previous education or background. Our unique teaching methods have proven successful in helping our learners better retain information, demonstrating that we understand the complexities of how online education works.”

Rachel Onoja, Head of Operations at AltSchool Africa shared, “We are committed to providing our learners with a fun, informative, and accessible learning experience. We believe that our learners should feel a sense of belonging as they learn in communities and that their time with us should be a profitable investment in their future”.

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